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Djedet - Mendes

Capital Cities

What: Capital City of Egypt, “The Domain of the Ram Lord of Djedet”, previously the Capital of the Lower Egyptian Nome of Kha, Nome 16 and in use very early in the Pharaonic period of Egypt, through to the Greek period

Where: Nile Delta region on the Mendesian Branch of the Nile approx. 35km East of al-Mansurah

When: 29th Dynasty: 398-380BC

Why: As a capital of a Nome, the city would have significant trade and administrative governance associated with it, so changing its status to a Capital City would not have been a stretch too far

Religion

Chief Deity was Banebdjedet: “Ba of the Lord of Djedet” or the “Ba of Osiris” for Lower Egypt. His equivalent in Upper Egypt was God Khnum. Represented as a Ram Headed God as the ancient Egyptian word for Soul and Ram sounded the same

Consort: Hatmehit, the Fish Goddess

Offspring: Harpakhered, Horus the child

Together they were known as the Triad of Mendesium, after the branch of the Nile the city was located on

Shabti of Pharaoh Nepherites I found in his Tomb 

Shrine

Pharaoh Amasis II

Ruins

Remains

Tell el-Ruba: is the site of the main Temple enclosure to the Triad

Temple appears to have been primarily constructed in the Middle Kingdom and then continued on into the New Kingdom Period

The Temple is thought to have 4 Pylons and 4 shrines contained within it to represent the 4 Gods who came together in Banebdjedet by him representing their souls, namely Osiris, Geb, Shu and Ra

A Cemetery of Sacred Rams for the Temple’s namesake Ram Deity, Banebdjedet, similar to the Crocodile Cemetery at Kom Ombo Temple for their namesake Deity, Sobek, is located in the North West Corner

Monuments were placed here by Pharaoh Ramses II, Pharaoh Merenptah and Pharaoh Ramses III

Another Temple appears to have been erected by Pharaoh Amasis II during the 26th Dynasty

The Tomb of Pharaoh Nepherites I seems to have been located here and was discovered in the 1992/1993 digging season. It was identified by the Shabti located inside the tomb as the Persians had destroyed all other significant remains with only votive food offerings seeming to remain

 

Tell el-Timai: home to the Settlement of the Capital City